Pandemic-hit rice farmers receive vegetable seeds for shift to high-value crops


Oct. 28, 2020 ...

The Office of the Provincial Agriculture (OPAg) and Sustainable Development Center of the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte spearheaded the distribution yesterday, October 27, of high-value commercial crop (HVCC) vegetable seeds to farmers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

As part of the Provincial Government's continuing assistance for stakeholders of its farming communities, OPAg requested over P-3 Million worth of HVCC vegetable seeds from the Department of Agriculture Regional Field Office I.

The City and Municipal HVCC Coordinators and Vegetable Growers Associations' Presidents officially received the seedlings which will be distributed to local farmers.

In his message, Governor Matthew Marcos Manotoc encouraged the agriculture stakeholders to venture into HVCC as an alternative livelihood from the plunging situation of rice production.

"Ito pong mga HVCC seed ay isang representation ng pagbabago sa agrikultura dito sa Ilocos Norte. Bagsak ang presyo ng mga palay dahil sa Rice Tariffication Law. Thus, we must diversify. I-push natin ito sa mga magsasaka."

"Tama na ang palay. Kung pwede mag-shift na tayo sa iba at doon magbibigay ng suporta ang Provincial Government," he added.

To cushion the impact of climate change and the pandemic, the Provincial Government continues to implement rehabilitation initiatives for farmers such as the provision of financial and livelihood assistance, and agricultural inputs and equipment, among others.